$19,612 - $25,927

2012 Toyota 4Runner Interior Review

Note: This interior review was created when the 2012 Toyota 4Runner was new.


Interior: 7.4

Reviewers say the Toyota 4Runner’s cabin is comfortable and basic, without feeling low-rent. The front and middle rows of seats are acceptable to most test drivers, but the back seat is tiny, which is typical for the class. Cargo space is also average for a midsize SUV, though the cargo hold is one of the largest out of all off-road SUVs. Many reviewers compare the 4Runner with the FJ Cruiser, another Toyota SUV that’s even more tailored for off-road duty.

  • "Interior materials are appropriately rugged and don't come off as looking or feeling low-buck.” -- Consumer Guide
  • "Some editors found the interior a bit overwrought, but none could argue it wasn't extremely functional, roomy, and easy to use." -- Truck Trend


Reviewers say the front- and second-row seats in the 4Runner are pretty comfortable and supportive, though the third row is only fit for young children. Some gripe about its high step-in height, but that’s to be expected in such a tall, rugged SUV. The base SR5 model comes with basic cloth seats, while the Limited model adds standard leather seats. The seats in Trail models are upholstered in a special water-resistant cloth fabric. Parents should note that while the water-resistant seats might not be as comfortable as regular cloth or leather, they make cleaning up after messy kids easier.

  • "Our main complaint with 4Runner is its steep step-in height, which complicates entry and exit. Once inside, most occupants will have more than sufficient headroom and legroom. The (front) seats are long-haul comfortable.” -- Consumer Guide
  • "The Toyota 4Runner offers spacious seating for five passengers. The optional third-row seat increases the count to seven, though it's suitable only for small adults or children.” -- Edmunds

Interior Features

Reviewers say that the Toyota 4Runner’s interior is functional but basic, aligning with what most expect to see in a truck-based SUV. Still, some of the interior parts and pieces could be of better quality.

The base Toyota 4Runner SR5 comes standard with features like air conditioning, an AM/FM CD player with an auxiliary audio jack, six-way manual-adjustable driver’s seat, a tilt/telescoping steering wheel with cruise control and three 12-volt power outlets.

Stepping up to the Trail model will add an upgraded stereo and an auto-dimming rearview mirror with integrated backup camera. It’s also the only 4Runner model that comes standard with the sliding rear cargo deck with an under-floor storage box and an overhead console with switches for a beefed-up off-road system. The top-of-the-line Limited model comes standard with dual-zone automatic climate control, leather-trimmed seats, Toyota’s Smart Key with push-button start and a leather-trimmed steering wheel.

  • "No-nonsense audio and climate controls are easy to reach for most drivers. We find it a bit strange that an auxiliary stereo input is located on the center console, but the USB audio connector is inconveniently placed in the glovebox.” -- Consumer Guide
  • "Hard plastics are abundant throughout the cabin, though most touch points are lightly padded. The oversized climate control knobs underscore the 4Runner's utilitarian design, but have a wobbly feel when operated.” -- Edmunds


The Toyota 4Runner can hold up to 89.7 cubic feet of cargo behind the front seats, or 88.8 cubic feet in models that include the sliding rear cargo deck. That’s about average compared with other midsize SUVs. Behind the second row, you’ll find 47.2 cubic feet of cargo space in models not equipped with either the sliding cargo deck or with third row seats. Models that include either of those features offer 46.3 cubic feet of cargo space. Any Toyota 4Runner with a third row offers 9 cubic feet of space with all three rows in use. Most other midsize SUVs offer more space than that behind the third row.

Test drivers mention that the 4Runner has tons of small-items storage as well.

  • "The rear cargo hold is as spacious as any 5-passenger midsize SUV. … Interior storage is very good, with a large glovebox and many assorted bins and cubbies.” -- Consumer Guide

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